Kashmir Indepth
Kashmir

Snowfall hits public utility services in Kashmir: Offices witness less attendence, 5000 vehicles stuck on Jammu-Srinagar Highway


Ishtiyaq Ahmad
Srinagar Jan 5 (KINS: The public utility services like power, transport have been hit by snowfall due to lack of preparedness by the administration in Kashmir.
Kashmir received light to moderate snowfall since Sunday. However, the government is yet to restore the basic amenities to people in several parts of the valley.
People have been facing abrupt power cuts while roads are waterlogged or under snow.
Mohammad Altaf, a resident of Kokernag, said that electricity is yet to be restored in various parts of Kokernag.
“In some areas, the electricity has been partially restored,” he told news agency Kashmir Indepth News Service (KINS).
He termed the assurances given by the government regarding the early restoration of electricity as “baseless”. “People have been suffering terribly due to the absence of electricity. Roads have not been cleared yet,” he said.
He said that students preparing for different exams are not able to study in absence of the electricity.
In south Kashmir’s Anantnag district, consumers of Dilagam, Kadipora, and main town have complained that they electricity has not been restored yet.
The situation is almost same in Srinagar even in metered areas. “For last two days, we face abrupt power cuts,” said Gulzar Ahmad, a resident of Habak.
While, the situation is grim in non-metered areas.
The cold wave conditions continued in Kashmir as Valley freezes in sub-zero temperatures.
The residents of main town Baramulla, said the unscheduled power cuts have made their lives “miserable”. 
A senior government official however said electricity was being restored. “South Kashmir has been badly affected by snowfall. Many transformers got damaged. Several electricity wires have also been damaged due to snowfall especially in Shopian,” the official told news agency KINS.
The non-clearance of snow has also led to disruption in supplies of commodities like vegetables, milk and other essentials. There was also a thin attendance of employees in government and private offices as they could not reach to their offices due to accumulation of snow. Very less traffic was plying on the roads.
“Only main road has been cleared but snow is lying on internal roads of the area,” said Farooq Ahmad, a resident of Sanatnagar.
While as fights remained suspended at the Srinagar airport due to poor visibility.
Jammu-Srinagar highway, the only surface link connecting Kashmir Valley with the rest of the world, also remained closed for the third consecutive day on Tuesday due to continuous accumulation of snow at several places.
Around 5000 vehicles, mostly trucks carrying essentials to the valley, are stranded at several places along the 270km stretch.
Meanwhile, Srinagar recorded a low of minus 0.8 °C while mercury settled at minus 1.1°C in Pahalgam, minus 4.0°C in Gulmarg,  Qazigund minus 0.2°C, Kupwara minus 0.7°C while Kokernag recorded a low of minus 0.7°C, the official said. (KINS)

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